Modest Mouse: The Moon & Antarctica: Pitchfork Review: two things come out of this review. 1) Pitchfork will lay down for any album with “thick” production values. 2) Brent DiCrescenzo is a much worse writer dealing with a record that he loves than he is dealing with one he hates or is indifferent to. That’s not a bad thing – I think that’s true of any music writer. It is, basically, damn hard to write a rave review: I’m sitting right now trying to think of words for the UK release of 69 Love Songs and I’m junking and redrafting stuff all the time.
Why’s it more difficult? Because when you write a rave you are laying yourself and your tastes on the line so much, for one thing, but also because a rave review is written with the express aim of actually getting your readers out to buy the record. I ought to finish reading the 9.8 Pitchfork review with a burning desire to hear The Moon And Antarctica. I don’t have any such desire – for that reason alone, it’s a bad review.
(All of this has no bearing on MM, who I’ve heard one track by, which I didn’t dislike (though it left me pretty cold). The contant references to OK Computer in the review make me uncomfortable, though, and I had my fingers and wallet burned by the execrable Grandaddy album recently, which left me deeply suspicious of Important Indie Rock.)